Online dating, however, is a game like any other. There are winners and losers, and the only way to win is to learn the rules of the game and use them to your advantage. This is easier said than done, but this guide will take you through everything you need to know in order to “win” the game of online dating – not only on Coffee Meets Bagel (CMB), but all dating sites. The arena may be different, but the game remains the same.
While CMB follows the same general structure as numerous other dating sites, there are several nuances and alterations to the basic formula that makes this site unique – and extremely challenging – for newcomers to find their feet. It is important to understand these changes in order to properly manage your expectations and ultimately find success.
Ultimately though, you will find that a lot of what works on Tinder also works on Coffee Meets Bagel, with only a few caveats to impede your progress. Brushing up your conversational skills and giving a bit of additional flavor and color to your profile can go a long way.
CMB places a strong emphasis on empowering its female users, allowing them to dictate the experience for both themselves and other users (to an extent). While such a change may seem arbitrary, the effects that it yields drastically change the way users need to interact with one another in order to find any degree of success, including female users.
“Bagels” is another term for the other users that you will encounter on the site (in this case, you are the eponymous Coffee). As a male user, you will be presented with 21 Bagels every day at noon. Like Tinder, you can either “pass” or “like” a profile, and if that user likes your profile in return, you are matched and are free to start messaging each other.
The catch is that the user on the receiving end of your like only has 24 hours to like your profile back. It gets even more interesting: while male users always receive 21 Bagels at noon every day, female users can only see users who have already liked them.
This is how CMB shifts the balance of power in favor of women. It forces male users to make the first move and lets female users properly gauge their options before making the decision to either swipe left or swipe right.
It may seem unfair towards male users – and mechanically speaking – it is. But there are certain privileges that male users can enjoy that female users cannot.
Fortunately, the algorithm is complex, and will usually present you with profiles that you have a good chance of being compatible with.
While the challenge of finding any degree of success on CMB can seem daunting, it is important to remember that it is not insurmountable. By following these steps, we guarantee that you will find more matches than ever before.
It is no secret that looks play a major role when it comes to online dating. To be clear, it is not actually how handsome or pretty you think you are – it is how you present yourself.
In order to spruce up your selection of photos, we recommend that you start by getting rid of any selfies, which tend to be unflattering and give potential matches the wrong impression. Find photos of you doing things you love, whether it be rock climbing or reading a book. A smile goes a long way as well, so try to save the moody pictures for later.
Avoid using group photos. These can be confusing for potential matches, which decreases the likelihood of them matching with you. Also, shirtless photos are not as appealing as you may have believed – get rid of them as soon as possible.
In general, you should aim for a well-rounded selection of photos, at least some of which should feature you smiling. Focus on capturing moments of you enjoying yourself, and include them in your profile. Additionally, people will be much more inclined to like you if you have a cute pet to show off. Here is an example of a great photo that could be used in a dating profile:
There is a reason that CMB provides you with so much space within which to write your bio. You should make it as comprehensive as possible (without giving everything away, of course). List your hobbies and interests, write down where you stay and where you work, and be honest about what type of person you are.
Additionally, it does not hurt to tell a joke or two. Keep the tone of your bio fairly light-hearted, and do not be afraid to be a little self-deprecating or humorous.
You should try to strike a balance between the factual and the esoteric. For every fact about yourself that you include (such as your height, or your place of work) be sure to add in things that are not as surface-level. If, for example, you choose to include your job, mention a few things that you like (or dislike) about your line of work. Anyone can have the same height or the same job as you – it is your individual thoughts and feelings that matter.
Above is an example of a solid profile that provides plenty of information. For other examples of good profiles, check out this blog post.
Eventually, you will find a match, and the chat window will open up. You have 7 days to get to know each other and set up a date before the chat window closes.
In order to make the most of this limited time frame, it is important to be as confident as possible while texting. One of the easiest ways to get your match to engage with you is to start with a question. In order to get them talking, ask them about one of their hobbies, or any other aspect of their profile that interests you. Then ask them out when the time is right.
No matter what you do, it is important that you start strong. For example, if opening up the conversation with a question, you could ask them what their favorite genre of music is. Or if you are more of a direct, straight-for-the-jugular kind of guy, open up with a good pick-up line, for example: “Hey, it’s cold out here, and I’ve lost my ear-muffs. Mind if I use your thighs?”
The second approach is definitely riskier, but if you are confident enough, do not be afraid to go down this route.
Additionally, you will want to keep things light-hearted to start. Do not be afraid to use emojis. Plenty of users appreciate them, so sprinkling your texts with a few smiley faces cannot hurt. Laughing emojis can demonstrate your good humor, just make sure that you use them appropriately.
Breaking the ice can be incredibly daunting; it sets the tone for the entire conversation, and can easily make or break a relationship before it even begins. Luckily, you can circumvent this problem by relying on these tried-and-tested methods of opening up a conversation.
Ask anything. It could be something totally mundane and simple, but it will kickstart the conversation because it forces the other person to engage with you. Just make sure that you have an idea of where you want the conversation to go. For example, you could ask your match what their favorite band is, then input your own thoughts and opinions afterward. A question like this can lead to some great conversations, so be sure to ask it.
Try to tailor your questions to the person you are speaking to. A good rule of thumb is to browse their profile and ask questions related to certain aspects. If they like a particular band, ask them why they like that band. Remember the five W’s: who, what, when, where, why; and the one H: how? Questions that start with these can be pretty open-ended, giving your match a variety of ways in which to respond. And finally, ask them for their number.
People like funny guys, so do not be afraid to show off your comedic chops. Whether it is a clever pun on your match’s name, or a cheeky comment about something in their profile, opening with a joke is one of the best ways to get someone engaged.
Some of these jokes only work once, but this one never fails. The odd-ball nature of it tends to catch people off-guard, leaving them totally disarmed by your wit. Use this to your advantage.
You only have 7 days to seal the deal on CMB, so sometimes it is worth it to go straight for the proverbial jugular. If your match seems like the bold and confident type, then do not be afraid to make your intentions clear right from the word go. In general, it is always best to get their details within 3 days anyway, because a lot can change within the space of a week.
Focus on building up a rapport as quickly as possible. Just because it has “online” tagged onto it does not mean this is not dating. The goal is to get a date. Keep that in mind, and do not spend too much time beating around the bush.
There are many other ways to get a conversation going, not just on CMB, but other dating sites as well. You can take a look at them here.
Conversation starters like this do not always pan out. But the right mix of personalities will let it work. Eventually, you will develop a sort of sixth sense about which users will respond well to certain approaches.
Coffee Meets Bagel presents some unique challenges to new users – particularly men – but they can and will be overcome with enough effort and dedication. Online dating will never be a cakewalk, but hopefully, this guide has made it a bit easier.